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09 March 2022
Communication to the Senate Finance Committee
The health crisis of 2020 led to an 8% contraction in French GDP - the largest since 1946
according to INSEE. In addition to the support measures, in autumn 2020 the Government
implemented a €100bn recovery plan (of which €39.4bn
should be paid for by the European
Union), with the aim of rapidly returning to pre-crisis levels of economic activity and
contributing to the transformation of the economy. The report published today,
commissioned by the Senate Finance Committee, examines the preparation, content and
implementation by a variety of stakeholders (State, public bodies and local authorities).
A recovery plan with several objectives and a wide range of measures
Designed in the summer of 2020 within a very short timeframe, the recovery plan aims to
ensure economic recovery while transforming the economy around three priorities: ecology,
competitiveness, and social and territorial cohesion, which share the total appropriations in
roughly equal parts. In many cases, it reinforces or provides resources for existing schemes
(such as the MaPrimeRénov’ aid), but it also supports new measures, particularly aimed at
developing the hydrogen sector or hiring young people. Due to the large number of measures
announced for the benefit of many economic sectors, the Court notes that it is difficult to assess
the plan as a whole, especially as complete and up-to-date information is not available. In this
respect, it stresses the need for careful monitoring to report on compliance with the
requirements or achievement of the targets that condition the payment of EU funding.
Rapid but complex implementation due to the large number of measures and stakeholders
While the implementation of the plan involves a large number of stakeholders, its governance
is based on several steering committees at national and regional levels, with unequal
involvement of their members. The measures were awarded in a variety of ways (public
procurement, one-stop-shop mechanisms or calls for projects) and were subject to rapid
decision-making processes, with the risk that priority was given to projects that were already
ready - at the expense of others that would need time to be designed. The choice of using a
new budgetary mission to group together a large part of the budgetary appropriations has led
to a certain complexity due to the numerous delegations of management of the appropriations,
the Court considers that this management method has made it possible to distinguish the
recovery appropriations within the State budget. The implementation of the plan has been a
major workload for the central administrations, the decentralised services and the operators
involved. Lastly, numerous communication actions have been undertaken to publicise the plan,
which the Court notes have led to the mobilisation of particularly significant financial resources
compared to other communication plans carried out by the Government, the justification for
which appears uncertain.
Difficulty in assessing the recovery plan at the end of 2021 and questions about its continued
While the Government’s target of 70% commitment of the Plan by the end of 2021 has been
achieved, with the remainder to be committed by the end of 2022, the consumption of
payment appropriations is expected to be slower and further disbursements are expected to
be phased in at least until 2026. For the Court, the continuation of the implementation of the
plan beyond 2021 raises several questions, in particular those of greater selectivity, the
evaluation of the effectiveness of the measures implemented, and the possible extension of
certain measures within the framework of the next public finance programming law, which the
Court of Accounts would like to see.
Read the report
Emmanuel Kessler
Director of Communications
01 42 98 97 43
Julie Poissier
Head of Press Relations
01 42 98 97 43
Cour des comptes
Cour des comptes